"Grow Your Inner Strength and Find Your Calm."
Our mission at Calm Mind Behavioral Health Counseling is to help you develop your own sense of self-awareness, self-acceptance, self-compassion, and self-empowerment. We provide individualized care that is tailored to meet the unique needs and objectives of each client. Working with clients, I take a compassionate, evidence-based, nonjudgmental approach that is centered on helping them strengthen their resiliency, learn effective coping skills, and realize their personal goals. Helping our clients regain their emotional well-being is one of our top priorities because we think everyone has the potential to live a life guided by their values and purpose.
Areas of Focus
Journeying Together.... Attempting to walk the same path with an intimate partner can be one of the most challenging and rewarding things we do in life. In a conscious, informed relationship, we honor the individuality of the other, attempt to understand the dynamic we co-create together and seek growth both individually and as a couple. Effective communication is essential to that ongoing growth. Entering into honest diaglogue with one another allows us to get our needs met, while also actively listening and attending to the needs of the other. Our ability to carry on a trusting dialogue can make all the difference between a healthy, vital relationship -- or one that languishes on the vine. Most of us have significant deficits in the skills mentioned above. Acquiring, improving, and implementing relational skills can benefit both you and the people around you immensely.
Finding Our Way Home... For most of us as men, it usually takes us until we're in a crisis to be able to say we need help. We've arrived at a point in life where we thought we'd be happy, but we're not; our relationships are strained; we're abusing a substance; the stress level at work is becoming unmanageable; or, perhaps, we're just feeling disconnected from the rest of the world and not clear how to reconnect. Often we wait too long to address these issues, if we ever address them at all. Acknowledging we need help may feel like a loss of control, but therapy can be a key step to gaining insight into why we may be stuck in a difficult place with no exit in sight. It can be a path out of the wilderness -- a vehicle to understanding ourselves in a way we may have only previously glimpsed.
Can I Control This...? I work with people who are struggling with all sorts of addictions: alcohol, chemical, sexual, gambling, and others. If you find yourself grappling with addictive behavior that is controlling your life, therapy could help. The therapeutic model I generally work from is referred to as "Harm Reduction." Often it is very difficult to stop the addictive behavior immediately. We work together to steadily reduce the harm the dependency is generating in your life. Gradually we can reduce the dependency and, hopefully, get you to a point where you're able to stop altogether. While stopping addictive behavior is a critical first step, maladaptive thinking and emotions may remain. Further therapeutic progress can be made by addressing difficult emotions that gave rise to the addictive behavior in the first place, and that may surface now that old coping methods are gone. Similarly, it is important to address any form of addictive thinking that may still be present, and introduce healthier, more adaptive ways of facing day-to-day challenges.
Leaving the Dark Behind.... Seeing your way out of a dark past back into the light can be a long and difficult process, but one well worth the effort. Sometimes, in order to defend ourselves, we've had to split off essential parts of our psyches to keep them from being damaged. If you have been the victim of abuse -- physical, sexual, emotional, spiritual -- please know that I can help you retrieve lost aspects of your true self that may have gone into hiding long ago. I'd like to help you move out of a traumatic history and identity toward healing and new life.
Mood and Anxiety
Retrieving the Lost Self..... Many of us have had to leave essential parts of our unique selves behind to fit some construct that may have little to do with who we truly are. That can block access to our innate self -- and diminish trust in our own intuitive instincts. Such a lack of connectedness can be a significant contributor to mood disorders. I enjoy helping people reintegrate those lost aspects of themselves through our work together, catalyzing new and more vital ways of being in the world. Life structure itself can be disabling. Today's economy and pace of work can place enormous stressors on our psyches and personal relationships. I see clients who are experiencing work-related anxiety or depression, or who may not know how to proceed with a significant partner or an intimate relationship.
I received my Masters of Professional Counseling from Liberty University. I am trained in contemplative psychotherapy, acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), cognitive processing therapy (CPT), the trans-theoretical model of behavior change, and motivational interviewing. I take an integrative approach, which means that I will use a variety of therapeutic techniques depending on your needs. because everyone is unique. Aside from being a therapist, I've done a variety of other things in my professional life. I've worked as a therapist in inpatient substance abuse facilities, prisons, schools, community centers, homeless shelters, and nonprofits.
Most recently, as Clinical Director, I oversaw several large programs totaling more than $10 million in annual revenue at a substance abuse rehabilitation facility. I trained and supervised a number of clinical staff members. My responsibilities included program management and counseling, mental health care, and community outreach.
I believe that the most important factor in determining how successful therapy will be for you is your relationship with your therapist. It is essential that you feel at ease with your therapist. I primarily work with adults in my private practice, specializing in anxiety, addictive behaviors, depression, personality disorders, severe mental illness, major life changes, low self-esteem, relationship dysfunction, career and professional issues, and emerging adult and adult identity development.
With my extensive background in counseling, I am confident in saying that I can offer a unique viewpoint on human behavior. As an adult with both training in therapy and personal experience, I have a more nuanced view of people's problems.
Focus: Individual and group therapy with clients facing addictive behaviors, depression, personality disorders, severe mental illness, anxiety, major life changes, low self-esteem, relationship dysfunction, career and professional issues, and emerging adult or adult identity development.
My approach to therapy begins with the understanding that I am an advocate for the values of self-determination and personal autonomy. It is because I have great respect for the dignity and worth of all people that I aspire to make a positive difference in people’s lives through counseling and education. My goal in therapy is to help people achieve optimal mental health, increased vitality, emotional well-being, and personal empowerment.
Personal empowerment means taking control of your life. It is about more than just feeling motivated, though motivation is an important element of personal empowerment. True personal empowerment requires the identification of what you want from life, the setting of meaningful goals, and then taking action to achieve those goals in order to have a greater impact on the world around you. Far too often, we overreact and are unnerved by undesirable and uncomfortable thoughts and feelings; in turn, we avoid situations in which those undesirable and uncomfortable thoughts and feelings are invoked. In essence, we are taken hostage by our emotions and rendered helpless in the pursuit of purpose. I work with people who want to find meaning in their lives and have more control over what they do. I will help you uncover the reasons (the invisible forces) that allow other people, things, events, and habits to make unwanted decisions for you. You can overcome your lack of confidence and reverse any lack of hope. A sound mind is attainable, and disruptive patterns of behavior can be changed and broken through the development of self-awareness, self-acceptance, and self-compassion.
I am a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and have more than 10 years of experience helping people face life’s challenges using evidence-based therapy, a great deal of compassion, and zero judgment. I graduated from Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA, with a Master's in Professional Counseling. I have worked with diverse populations in residential and outpatient settings and with individuals, families, and groups. My experience has afforded me the opportunity to hone a multicultural competency and develop excellent diagnostic and psychotherapeutic skills. I am practiced and knowledgeable in the treatment of anxiety, depression, addictive behaviors, relationship problems, severe mental disorders, and career guidance. I also received advanced training in sexual addictions, substance use problems, and other behavioral addictions.